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Kiel Week Kicks Off

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Racing is underway for the Olympic classes at Kiel Week Regatta in Germany. A small New Zealand contingent is competing including one women's match-racing crew helmed by Samantha Osborne, plus Mike Bullot in the Laser class and Matt Coutts in the Finn event.

The regatta, which is the penultimate in the series of seven events which make up the ISAF Sailing World Cup, will run over five days.

Mike Bullot has made a solid start on day one up against 117 other entries in the single-handed men's dinghy event. With a 5th, an 11th and a race win on day one of the regatta the North Shore Laser campaigner is in sixth place in the standings.

Bullot comes to this event after competing at the Laser European Championships where he placed fifth in a highly competitive fleet.

Over in the Women's Match Racing event, the New Zealand team is one of 24 competing. The fleet is split into three groups of eight teams for round robin racing, and the New Zealand team with Samantha Osborne at the helm had three wins and one loss on day one in Group B.

'Today was one of those days that you are glad that thermals were invented,' reports the team. 'We froze in an offshore breeze of 12-15 knots. It was nice and shifty which bought lots of upsets in other pools during the day.'

'As day one comes to an end, we add three wins (POL, CAN, ITA) and one loss (RUS) to the score board from our round robin racing. The team is content with their wins, as they were quite solid with substantial leads.'

'The agenda for tomorrow is to finish our final three races of group B in the morning. At the moment the weather forecast shows light breezes... but we shall see.'

Graeme Sutherland is in Germany as coach to the Women's Match Race team.

Matt Coutts is representing New Zealand in the Finn class, and after day one sits well inside the top half of the 55-strong fleet in 18th place.

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